Sunday, 31 March 2013

Pendle Hill – 31 March

Like a number of others we headed for Pendle Hill today.

 

20130331_001_untitled-9-EditThe lowlands surrounding it were warm and sunny – the summit was blasted by a bitterly cold easterly wind.

High Street to Red Screes – 30 March

With Albert for a wee look at the Joss route particularly to make sure we could find Pike How and the best descent to Kirkstone Pass. We found Pike How and a readily identifiable attack point, we failed to find the best descent to Kirkstone Pass but the snow was so deep on the slope we probably wouldn’t have been able to use it and we ‘ticked’ an extra, unnecessary  summit.

Setting off from Hartsop in snow it seemed as though it was going to be a very difficult day and a not terribly useful recce but the snow stopped, the wind didn’t drop and the sun came out on Red Screes to provide a wonderful finish. In between, we met Meg on the summit of High Street and took a short cut up a snow filled gully on Red Screes.

20130330_001_high_street-100-Edit“Private – No Entry” – climbing out of Hartsop

20130330_002_high_street-106-EditFoot bridge at the outflow from Hayeswater

20130330_003_high_street-109-EditHayeswater under low dark clouds

20130330_004_high_street-113-EditThe Knott with a summiteer

20130330_005_high_street-121-EditTowards High Street summit

20130330_006_high_street-125-EditWind sculptures

20130330_007_high_street-127-EditWind sculptures and Albert

20130330_008_high_street-135-EditThe wall near High Street summit

20130330_009_high_street-139-EditAlbert (on left) with Meg with her owner

20130330_010_high_street-143-EditFroswick and Ill Bell above Kentmere

20130330_011_high_street-155-EditThe other side of Froswick and Ill Bell

20130330_012_high_street-156-EditThornthwaite Crag

20130330_013_high_street-176-EditHungry dogs on Red Screes

20130330_014_high_street-178-EditLooking north over Middle Dodd

20130330_015_high_street-189-EditBrothers Water

Saturday, 30 March 2013

Rivington Pike – 29 March (Easter Friday)

Not a normal day on “The Pike” by any means but there is a long standing tradition of walking “Up The Pike” on Easter Friday, for good luck or, perhaps, for the Fair. The Fair is smaller, more sober and far less boisterous than it was in its day but judging by the number of young people about {easier to say as you get older :~)} the tradition is being maintained.

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Tomorrow will be something of a contrast when the runners in the Rivington Pike fell race run up and down here. Unlike last year I’ll be heading for some bigger hills, a little further north.

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Not Winter Hill (again) – 24 March

No more snow but just as much wind so I decided against Winter Hill again. This is going to turn into a relatively easy week – plenty of miles but too many of them flat. The snow drifts seem to have settled and many look as though they will be here a while.

These are the local fields where even the sheep were driven to shelter in their small tin sheds but they were too far away to photograph.

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Not Winter Hill – 23 March

Friday night’s snow and Saturday morning’s strong wind ensured unpleasant conditions on Winter Hill. A walk across the fields at the back of our house confirmed it was a good choice not to run early or high. Later in the day, despite the wind, I managed a few miles along the Leeds-Liverpool tow path and saw some of the biggest snow drifts I have seen away from the hills.

20130323_001_aspull-11-EditInto Borsdane Woods

20130323_002_aspull-111-EditFarm on the edge of the woods

20130323_003_aspull-5-EditCouple being walked by their dog.

20130323_004_aspull-310-EditSnowdrift

20130323_005_aspull-313-Edit-2Snowdrift (2)

Sunday, 17 March 2013

Not High Street – 16 March

We headed north on Saturday with a plan to do the end of the Joss first leg and the start of the second leg but I wanted the visibility to be good so that I could relearn the descent from Caudale Moor. The snow at the Kirkstone Inn and the low cloud put paid to any ideas of a worthwhile recce.

20130316_001_fairfield-101-EditKirkstone Inn

20130316_003_fairfield-109-EditKirkstone Pass (i)

20130316_002_fairfield-108Kirkstone Pass (ii)

The Fairfield Horseshoe seemed a reasonable local alternative which Pauline (quite wisely) decided against and settled for a lower level run out of Ambleside. A clockwise attempt might have been a mistake but I don’t it would really have made much difference. Just beyond Nab Scar the ridge had already climbed above both the cloud-base and the snow line. The rain had turned to snow and the visibility simply vanished. Not quite a white-out but close. The ascent over Heron Pike and Great Rigg was straight forward with fresh boot prints to follow, at least as far as Great Rigg. There I passed the first of the day’s walkers and was on my own.

The stronger winds on Fairfield had done a pretty good job of scouring the old snow so that even my studs left almost no impression. The wind also cleared the tops of some of the cairns and some of the shelters on the summit even although the shelters remained full of snow.

 

20130316_004_fairfield-2-Edit Shelter on Fairfield Summit

So far so good but reaching the summit is a job half-done and getting down is the mandatory half of the day. Reduced to taking a bearing to the east bound path I found my compass wouldn’t show a consistent direction. Three times I returned to the shelter and three times after setting off in the same direction my compass indicated a different direction after about 50 yards. Having concluded I had a problem with my compass and that retracing my steps wasn’t possible because the faint impression I had made on the way up had already been obliterated. Fortunately I have descended to Grisedale Tarn often enough, both day and night, to recognised the significant landmarks even under a foot or more of drifting snow and so I descended from Fairfield in deep snow to the tarn.

Seat Sandal was tempting but I was already off my declared route and it wouldn’t have been sensible to go over Seat Sandal in these conditions. Tongue Gill provided a route down to the road and all that remained was the slog back to Ambleside.

 

20130316_005_fairfield-7-EditTowards Grasmere

20130316_006_fairfield-10-EditGreen Burn

20130316_007_fairfield-12-EditRydal Water

Sunday, 10 March 2013

Haworth Hobble – 09 March

One of the few occasions when the weather forced me to keep my camera under wraps outdoors. 6 hours (minus a few seconds) of rain/sleet/snow was pretty much the story of my Hobble along with legs that retained a trace or more of last week’s High Peak Marathon.
Before
20130309_001_HHobble-7-EditLooking at Third and First Lady although he didn’t know
20130309_002_HHobble-8-EditThere is a lot of bending down before setting off
After

20130309_003_HHobble-9-EditFirst Ultra done – well done Louise
20130309_004_HHobble-11-EditBrett (Race Organiser) making sure the kitchen is working OK
20130309_005_HHobble-12-EditMay have been spotted here
20130309_006_HHobble-13-EditFirst Lady – Well Done, Josie
20130309_008_HHobble-15-EditPost Mortem
20130309_007_HHobble-14-EditThree stages of recovery
20130309_009_HHobble-17-EditThe Agony – explaining how an error in route finding meant missing his target time by 51 seconds
20130309_010_HHobble-21-EditThe Ecstasy – no route finding errors, obviously.
Huge thanks to Brett and everyone else involved in making the 2013 Hobble happen.